South Boston family pleads for return of stolen statue containing father and grandfather’s ashes

"We just want my grandpa and dad home, and we're hoping that they get home before Father's Day."

Lifelong South Boston resident Jessyca Doyle is hoping whoever stole the Charlie Chaplin statue from her side yard will soon return it, no questions asked.

The colorful three-and-a-half-foot-tall statue isn’t just a decoration — it contains the ashes of her father and grandfather.

Doyle said she believes she last saw the 40-pound statue outside her home in Dorchester Heights on June 2. Her aunt and cousin noticed it missing on June 5.

“We have a lot of different family members within Southie who would drive by and see the little statue and say a prayer or think of my dad. And now it’s gone,” she told NBC10 Boston.

The Charlie Chaplin statue pictured above was stolen from outside a South Boston home. It contains ashes from two different Doyle family members. – Courtesy of Jessyca Doyle

The statue was one of Doyle’s father’s last painting projects. So when he died in 2018, she said, the family decided to put his ashes in it. Then, when her grandfather, Daniel “Babar” Doyle, died in 2020, the family decided to lay him to rest with his son, who was also named Daniel Doyle.


“Remembering when he originally painted the statue was one of my most prominent memories when I visited,” Doyle told NBC10 Boston. “It means a lot to me. It means — kind of like my dad never left, he’s always watching over me.”

Doyle said she contacted Boston police about the theft Thursday and that they came to her home to investigate the scene. She said anyone with information about the theft should contact police.

Even so, Doyle said she’s happy for someone to simply return the statue to her home, and that her family understands it might have just been taken as a drunken prank.

“We just want my grandpa and dad home, and we’re hoping that they get home before Father’s Day,” she said.


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